Category Archives: Location Based Marketing

Google Wins Mobile Payments Race With Summer Launch Of ‘Wallet’ App

Well I guess you could say if Google is gonna get into this space, then all with be looking and wanting to follow.

A couple of interesting things I see in this space unfolding – one around the opportunity for targeted, relevant advertising ( with a bit of social location thrown in for good measure) and the second for a robust solution that tackles the area of fraud. Maybe device fingerprinting from a company such as Bluecava could provide a solution that tackles both these areas. Let’s see….

The race to make mobile payments mainstream is one of the most competitive contests in the wireless industry, pitting telecom operators against credit card companies, payment processors, handset makers and operating system providers. With its May 26 announcement that it is poised to launch a national mobile commerce network (using its Android phones), Google now appears to be in the lead.

The service, called Google Wallet, will store credit cards in electronic form on Android phones. Users will be able to pay for purchases by wirelessly “tapping” their handsets against special readers in participating stores. Users can also receive targeted offers, such as coupons for products they have bought in the past or have indicated they like, directly on their phones while in stores. Loyalty rewards will be automatically tallied within Wallet and receipts will be electronic, as well, popping up on the phone instead of printing out on paper.

Merchants have already started testing the setup and will begin trials in San Francisco and New York City before expanding nationally this summer. American Eagle, the Container Store, Macy’s, Subway, Toys “R” Us and Walgreens are part of the initial group of retailers that will support the system.

As the name Wallet suggests, the app will support a variety of different cards, including credit cards, loyalty cards and gift cards. At first, Google Wallet will only work with Citi MasterCards, since both companies are Google Wallet launch partners. Users can also opt to load money onto a prepaid, Google-hosted card that can be funded by another type of credit card. Google says it will add more cards over time and hopes to eventually include other types of ID and passes, such as drivers licenses, event tickets and electronic hotel keys.

Retailers, says Google, will benefit from a corresponding service called Google Offers that will enable consumers to search for special offers and save them to their Google Wallet. Those stored coupons can then be redeemed by tapping a Wallet-equipped phone at a cash register or showing the phone screen to a cashier.

Merchants will be able to customize incentives based on a customer’s location and transaction history. A particularly frequent customer can receive a higher-value deal than a less loyal customer, for instance. Google Offers will go live in Portland, San Francisco and New York City this summer.

Google also plans to support location-based “check-in” offers, offers that are placed like ads in Google searches and offers that are situated in Google’s local business/maps service, Google Places.

Using a cellphone as a wallet is convenient but could be risky. Google says its Wallet app contains multiple levels of security, including a phone screen lock and a required Google account and pin number. The search giant also says credit cards are encrypted on a secure element within the phone and never fully displayed.

Part of the security comes from a chip developed by European semiconductor maker NXP, which collaborated with Google on its latest flagship smartphone, the Samsung-made Nexus S. That chip also enables Google Wallet to communicate wirelessly with all the various Wallet partners, via a technology called NFC (near-field communication).

Google’s vision appears similar to strategies espoused by organizations like ISIS, the mobile commerce startup backed by AT&T, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless. New York-based ISIS is about a year behind Google, though it may have an advantage in being compatible with a greater variety of phones once it launches.

During Google’s Thursday New York event, its Vice President of Payments, Osama Bedier, argued that Google is “uniquely positioned” to roll out a mobile commerce program because of its wide-ranging partnerships forged through Android and its search and advertising businesses. Bedier, who was a top executive at eBay’s PayPal until January, noted, “This has to be an ecosystem; it can’t just be one company.”

Bedier also acknowledged Google’s lead in the mobile payments race by adding, “This is not just an idea or announcement…this is up and running.”

Source: http://blogs.forbes.com/elizabethwoyke/2011/05/26/google-wins-mobile-payments-race-with-summer-launch-of-wallet-app/

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Best Buy expands location-based walk-in rewards to 1,300 locations nationwide

Shopkick- Best BuyBest Buy drives in-store traffic via shopkick app

Best Buy is ramping up its mobile game by expanding shopkick walk-in rewards to all of its 1,300 locations nationwide.

The company is rewarding consumers and offering consumers exclusive deals just for stepping inside almost any of its locations. Best Buy originally unveiled shopkick in 257 stores and the nationwide launch will now place shopkick in all 1,296 Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile United States locations.

“This is basically what we’ve been waiting for since we’ve been launched,” said Cyriac Roeding, cofounder/CEO of shopkick, Palo Alto, CA. “The roll out is the ultimate proof that shopkick is working for retailers.

“After 9 months of testing, Best Buy went nationwide,” he said. “It was much sooner than planned.”

The Best Buy family of brands and partnerships collectively generates more than $50 billion in annual revenue and includes brands such as Best Buy, Audiovisions, Best Buy Mobile, The Carphone Warehouse, Five Star, Future Shop, Geek Squad, Magnolia Audio Video, Napster, Pacific Sales, and The Phone House.

Last year, shopkick launched its mobile application that hands consumers high-value rewards, offers and exclusive deals at shopkick’s national retail partners simply for walking into stores and malls. Even more rewards can be earned for scanning partner brand products at over 250,000 stores nationwide.

Mobile rewards
Previously, Best Buy was awarding shopkick users when they shopped in its store locations.

Now, the company is simply rewarding consumers just for walking into a store.

Best Buy ran tests that show incremental lift in traffic when they increased rewards for walking in.

Smartphone shoppers can download the shopkick mobile application to take advantage of the initiative.

According to Best Buy, the rollout will make the company the first of shopkick’s launch partners and first consumer electronics retailer to provide the mobile shopping experience to customers.

How it works
The shopkick app, combined with the shopkick Signal – an inaudible sound emitted from a patent-pending device located in each participating retailer – verifies a user is in-store, and then rewards them for visiting in the form of a currency called “kicks.”

Best Buy originally unveiled shopkick in 257 stores and the nationwide launch will now place shopkick in all 1,296 Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile United States locations.

“We recently released shopkick 2.0, which allows you to select your favorite stores and you can select them and they are always with you in a sleek user interface where you can see their deals anytime, and swipe them and see them at any point,” Mr. Roeding said.

“In the next step we’re going to show initial cool features and that’s a big step forward because consumers love to interact with their most favorite places and no one has offered you only your favorite places in one screen, on one app in top deals only,” he said.

Source: http://www.mobilemarketer.com/cms/news/content/10010.html


M-commerce – coming soon to a location near you

Coming to a shop, restaurant, cinema, carwash, hair salon….the rise and rise of hyper local, m-commerce consumer offerings….

New York – A Carrabba’s Italian Grill executive at the Mcommerce Summit: State of Mobile Commerce 2011 conference said that offering a mobile incentive via an SMS or location-based services campaign is key to engage new and exisiting consumers.

The Italian concept restaurant chain is using mobile Web sites, SMS messaging and location-based social media to help drive acquisition, engagement and activation. During the “Carrabba’s Italian Grill: How mobile enhances the restaurant retail experience” keynote, the executive discussed how the company is exploring mobile display and search, as well as customer relationship management.

The conference was organized by Mobile Commerce Daily.

“For me to ask someone to give me their email address requires a certain amount of trust,” said Jamie Miller, brand marketing manager of Carrabba’s Italian Grill, Tampa, FL.”

“To turn around ask someone for their telephone number requires a heck of a lot more trust,” he said.

Leveraging that trust to communicate with customers in a meaningful way is a central focus of the chain’s mobile strategy.

In addition to the personal nature of mobile, other reasons for its attractiveness to Carrabba’s is the number of tools mobile offers as well as its immediate, hyperlocal and addictive nature.

Loyalty tie-in
“If our Staten Island location wants to address peak hours, we can deploy mobile tactics to specifically drive this,” Mr. Miller said. “That hyperlocal nature is very important to us.”

To drive customer acquisition, Carrabba’s uses any real estate it has, including check presenter inserts and banners in restaurants to communicate about its mobile program.

It is also leveraging its loyalty program, which has more than one million members, to send emails inviting members to experience Carrabba’s mobile Web site.

The company polled its loyalty program members about what components of a mobile Web site are most important to them.

Location information was the number one response, followed by menu information and mobile ordering.

The mobile Web site serves as the hub of Carrabba’s mobile activity.

The chain focuses on ways to provide users a reason to visit the site and then provide content that will motivate them to visit a restaurant.

“I wanted to enhance our user experience with our mobile Web site, making it quick and easy for customers to get the information they want,” Mr. Miller said.

Since the launch of the mobile Web site, Carrabba’s has seen a 22 percent increase in overall Web site traffic, including 76.3 percent new visitors to mobile site.

The chain’s SMS program started with 12 restaurants.

The company sent a text message with an offer once a week to those in its mobile database.

This was done to engage with these customers and learn from them.

“I really wanted to learn things like what offers drove them and what time to end out messages,” Mr. Miller said.

There was a 68 percent redemption rate of deployed offers.

Carrabba’s built a mobile database for each of its locations.

This enabled the company to create offers that address the needs of specific locations, whether it is to drive Sunday sales, bar sales, off-peak sales or catering.

The program was then expanded to include engagement messaging in addition to offer messages, with offers going out once a week.

The offers are sent to recipients weekly messages and asks them what their favorite dishes are.

One of the goals of these efforts was gain insight into whether it was discounting people who are already coming into a location or bringing in incremental visits.

Respondents to a poll asking customers about this indicated 73 percent a mobile offer drove an incremental visit.

“This shows we’re providing value to customers as well as to each one of our locations,” Mr. Miller said.

Foursquare builds relationships
Carrabba’s mobile efforts also include a partnership with Foursquare, which was introduced last year.

According to Mr. Miller, the goal with Foursquare is to reward silent, but regular customers.

The company introduced an offer providing a complimentary dessert offer to each Carrabba’s “Mayor.”

This resulted in 22,401 check-ins.

The offer was later changed to a loyalty special offer, giving customers a complimentary appetizer on every fifth check-in with the purchase of an entrée. There were 28,956 check-ins with the new offer.

“Foursquare is a conversation starter and relationship builder,” Mr. Miller said.

Source: http://www.mobilemarketer.com/cms/news/content/9940.html


Seatwave: iPhone App review

A nice mix of user location, recommendations from the users iPod collection plus a bit of m-commerce thrown in for good measure….anyone fancy going to a gig?

The Seatwave app uses information on the user’s location and the contents of the iPod to recommend upcoming concerts.

The app allows you to search according to your current location, or else set a location manually. In my area, there isn’t much on offer, unless N-Dubz is your thing, but there are many more events listed around London.

If you want to find recommendations that are closer to your own tastes, then the app will scan the contents of your iPod and recommend any upcoming concerts from artists it has found there:

There is also the option to search manually by artists, venues or dates, but this link to iTunes is a great way to simplify the process.

Once you’ve found a concert, you can click for more details on ticket prices and availability. So we can see that there are a few tickets left for Barry Manilow at the O2 Arena:

You can also see what kind of view you will get with the help of this seating map:

If you want to go ahead and book, you can do this through the app, and the checkout has been optimised for mobile:

The checkout is OK, but some of the extra charges may be offputting. A £55 ticket turns into £73 thanks to the addition of booking fees and a £6.99 ‘last minute handling’ charge:

Conclusion

This is a well-designed and easy to use app, which makes great use of location and the mobile user’s musical tastes to recommend upcoming concerts.

It should also be a great way to shift tickets at the last minute to consumers in the local area, and fill up any spare capacity.

The fact that tickets for last minute gigs have be collected in person from somewhere other than the venue makes the whole process less easy than it should be.

This is where mobile ticketing would be a massive bonus, though this has yet to be widely adopted by big players in the market. This blog post from Seatwave explains why this might be.


Mobile web: the game changed

The accessing of the internet from mobile is growing rapidly and one area that is growing in equal importance is the area of device identification. Being able to provide information back to any number of sources on what device a user is using to access the mobile internet, apps etc. will be a driving force in the future of engaging users with the services they want instead of vice versa….

7.1m Brits now access the internet via their mobile phone, and that’s actually quite a lot! And, not only are these users generally more affluent, but they are also avid consumers of digital marketing.

The advent of truly mobile internet, and the incredible speed of adoption by the population as a whole, is causing a re-evaluation of web marketing.

Mobile web is the greatest revolution since the invention and adoption of the PC. That might seem like a bold statement to make, but the platform has changed.

Using the internet does not necessarily mean being stuck under a desk sitting at home or in the office. You don’t need to pull a laptop out of a carry case to use it, and you can even choose the size that most suits your needs.

The impact these devices are having, and the tide of change that is following in wake of their adoption is fundamental.

So what does this mean for digital marketers? How will mobile web change email marketing in the near future? What are the challenges this opportunity has created? And how do we ride this wave and grasp the opportunities that are being laid before us?

Game changing technology

It’s the device that’s done it; the truly mobile computer. The only issue is some devices still hold onto that archaic title “phone”.

The challenge with mobile internet has been that to make the most of the medium you need to easily interact with the device. This is what’s made the latest generation of mobile devices so different.

Even with the smaller screens, the superb resolution and usable touch screen makes the internet truly mobile. The apps and software work together with this new technology to make the whole mobile web experience simple and satisfying. This has allowed people new to the concept, to quickly adapt and benefit from the new platform, thereby fuelling high adoption rates.

Look at any of the research available on mobile internet and they are all pointing in one direction. Mobile internet is growing and it’s growing fast.

Game changed for email?

Email has gone mobile. According to the Econsultancy Mobile Statistics Compendium, email is used by 75.4% of British iPhone owners, making it the most popular internet activity on the phone. The same study stated that mobile adoption patterns mirror the early days of the internet, when email dominated usage.

Wait a minute… wasn’t email supposed to be dead (or on its last legs anyway)? Or could it be that mobile internet has taken one of the most powerful online channels to date, and given it legs.

Email is now on the move. You follow the recipient around their daily lives; you engage with them when they are doing lots of other things. They could be watching TV, at a restaurant, with friends.

The mobile experience changes the way users interact with your email as well your website. Arguably, interacting with a PC could be quite a lonely experience. With mobile internet, sharing now includes simply handing your phone to your friends.

Mobile email looks slightly different too! It not only demands great graphics, but it wants to be super usable on the small screen. One of the best ways to do this is to code the email to fit the screen it is being used on.

From the data I have seen so far and opinion on the web, people seem to use mobile as “one” of the ways that they will be viewing the email, so this needs to be considered when developing the template. Is it possible to develop a template that is going to satisfy both a traditional desktop client as well as the mobile browser? That’s going to be worth quite a bit of testing!

Another new consideration is the actionable copy (links). Are they touch screen friendly? Or is the recipient forced to expand the screen to click on the link? The same is going to go for putting links close together, as you don’t want to send butter fingers off to the wrong place.

Although the web has gone mobile, it seems like more people fail to complete a transaction on mobile, than they do on a PC. The figures also seem to suggest a substantial amount of people intend to use more mobile ecommerce in the future. This means basket abandonment emails will be even more important to mobile conversions than it is for normal static web.

Game changed for e-commerce and conversion rate optimisation  

The Mobile Shopping Framework Study” is one in a series of white papers from Yahoo that provides an overview of the mobile landscape. In the report, half of consumers claim they purchase an item after researching on their mobile, and 90% of mobile owners access the web from the retail store floor.

So now price comparison shopping could consist of walking round the shops, handling the products, comparing prices online, and making the buying decision. In fact, the Yahoo mobile study revealed “Almost half of all mobile in-store activity involved transmitting a picture of a product to personal contacts for comment”.

The adoption of mobile web is gaining pace, and the e-commerce platform will be moving out of the home and into the pocket. One of the key challenges now facing the digital marketer is optimising the conversion process for users of mobile web.

As was mentioned before, mobile users fail to complete the transaction more often than other web users and this is an issue that needs to be addressed.

It’s almost as though there is now a third way of doing things, it seems to fit in the middle between the full blown website optimised for the modern PC screen, resolution settings and controls, and the cut down versions developed to cater for the previous generation of mobile devices.

So, will you need three versions of your website? I don’t think so…

The mobile platform for internet is going to become a core part of the way people interact with e-commerce, so people must be able to do things when they want to do them.

This means the web will need to be designed for the mobile. It’s surely not unrealistic to expect some businesses to achieve 50% of web sales via mobile. If the consumer wants to order their daily shopping while watching the telly, or sitting on the train, then that’s what they are going to do.

So, whichever website allows them to achieve this simply, with the best user experience, will most likely get the business.

User experience and conversion rate optimisation will become even more vital for achieving good results from mobile internet. Mobile device and software developers have given consumers the means to use the web whenever convenient.

The e-commerce winners will be those that make it easy to shop, whether the customer is behind a desk or on the move.

Source: http://econsultancy.com/uk/blog/7468-mobile-web-the-game-changed?utm_medium=email&utm_source=topic


The A-Z of Location Based Marketing

 

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26 key elements inside this wide and complex channel that you probably need to be aware of. A  mixture of trends, platforms, strategy and more, avoiding simply listing the main players in the market that everyone knows about.

 

A … is for Apps

Apps are important and have proved to be a game-changer for geomarketing. 29% of mobile owners use location based apps on their phones more than once a day and 27% use them multiple times on a weekly basis. This is expected to dramatically increase in the future.

B … is for Businesses

Get your business online! Google Places should already be a staple part of of any SME/SMB company’s online marketing presence. Even enterprises with localised offline stores can jump on board to reach out to a local audience.

C … is for Campaign

Location-based marketing can take many forms so you need to think about your objective and then build a strategy around this. Will a quick PR campaign achieve your goals, or would you be better off finding a more long-term approach?

D … is for Directory

Getting listed in local directories is being overlooked a lot at the moment, in favour of more sexy kinds of geomarketing.

I still think there’s enormous value (especially for smaller businesses) in getting onboard with niche sites such as Yelp or TopTable. It’ll also help improve search visibility, which is an important factor, considering that more than 20% of search queries have a localised intent.

E  … is for Engagement

If you’re going to have a geo-based mobile application, you have to make it engaging for your audience. If not, it probably won’t work, especially when you consider that it has to compete with millions of other apps to stand out.

It’s generally the same for any wider campaign: if it doesn’t get people wanting to be involved, you’re likely not to meet your objectives.

F … is for Foursquare

I said I wouldn’t mention too many location-based services, but to ignore Foursquare would be silly. The platform has seen great uptake amongst users and brands have been quick to wade in.

There are a lot of great case studies of smart, creative campaigns floating around.

G … is for Gowalla

G was pretty hard, so I had to use this one. Gowalla is pretty similar to Foursquare: It’s a location-based social network that users can connect to and check-in based on their physical location.

In return virtual rewards are collected, which can then be redeemed for real-life rewards like cinema tickets.

H … is for Hotpot

Google is seriously throwing itself into localised content and search results. Hotpot is a new UGC local recommendation engine, Here’s a good explanation as to how this works.

It still seems to be developing, but may well gather momentum in the near future.

I … is for Information

A lot of users are looking for information from local businesses: where a store is based, opening times and more. Don’t withhold this from them!

Ensure that they have access to as much information about your company as possible across as many touchpoints you can manage.

J … is for JiWire

JiWire is a smart location-based advertising company, which uses free wifi hotspots to serve up relevant display ads.

It’s quite a new company, but an innovative approach means that it is blazing a trail across location-based marketing.

K … is for Knowledge

Before embarking on any form of geomarketing, you need to arm yourself with knowledge to help you understand your goals – at marketing and business levels – and to plan around these.

Who are your main audience? What are their behaviours? What do you want them to do? The questions that need to be asked will go on for a long time, but once you full know what the answers are, the rest should fall into place.

L … is for Latitude

Google Latitude is a location-aware mobile app. It allows the user to share their location on Google Maps with selected people to whatever degree they want: eg. Street, city or country levels.

It can be turned on and off at will, so gives a large amount of control. While this on its own is arguably nothing special, it has an open API that marketers can take advantage of.

M … is for Mobile

Without a doubt, mobile handsets are changing the location-based marketing game. The flexibility and potential now offered by smartphones means that the only real limit is creativity. (And budget).

N … is for Nice-to-have

You need to question whether having some geomarketing capabilities are essential or just nice-to-have.

What’s more important: allocating resources to ensure that your chain of offline stores can be found in the results of user’s local search queries, or setting up a Foursquare campaign?

O … is for Objective

What do you want from your location-based activities? Branding? Increased awareness? Sales? Leads? Once you understand this, figuring out the best strategy to achieve it should be pretty easy.

P … is for Places

What kind of list would this be without mentioning Facebook Places? Places lets users check-in to Facebook using a mobile device and share their location with their social networks.

Recent developments have seen partnership deals with the likes of Starbucks, Debenhams, O2 and Yo!Sushi.

Q … is for Question

As already mentioned, you need to question not only what you want from any location-based marketing, but also what your users want.

With the best will in the world, without understanding your main demographic, planning and execution of a campaign or programme can still go horribly wrong if not realised properly.

R … is for Rewards

It’s no secret that users love rewards and marketers are using this more and more. The likes of Facebook, Foursquare and Gowalla have all formed partnership deals with companies to reward users with physical products, based on ideas surrounding location loyalty.

S … is for Search

Two words here, really: Local search. You need to make sure you’re on it, for all the obvious reasons.

T  … is for Twitter

Twitter recently launched Twitter Places, which is the functionality to show the location of users as part of an opt-in process. If a user chooses this option, then all their Tweets are subsequently attached to publicly shared information about their exact location.

U … is for User experience

In the same sense as “Engaging”, geomarketing has to deliver a great user experience, particularly if it’s part of a campaign. Without good UX, users will quickly stop participating.

V … is for Voucher

As with rewards, vouchers are growing to become a large part of geomarketing. The clever chaps at Vouchercode show how this is best done.

W … is for WiFi

As wifi becomes increasingly free, it’s getting easier for users to share their location with their networks and to engage with geo-driven campaigns and marketing. Arguably, this has been a big driver of the increase of LBM, alongside smartphone handsets.

X  … is for X-marks the spot

Make sure your location is right! There’s nothing more frustrating for a user than to discover you’ve moved, but haven’t changed the details on search-based maps, for example…

Y  … is for Y-gen

Just something to keep in mind, but statistically, Generation-Y is more likely to share their location and engage with geomarketing.

Z … is for Zzzz

Location-based marketing has been around for a while, but it’s definitely here to stay, helped along by the user uptake of social media and mobile. If you snooze, you’ll lose.

Source: http://econsultancy.com/uk/blog/7292-the-a-z-of-location-based-marketing?utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter